The phrases “very much appreciated” and “I very much appreciate it” are somewhat standard practice in English, and you’ll hear native speakers saying them all the time. However, common mishearings lead to incorrect variation, like “very much appreciate it,” which combines the two phrases to make one. Is this correct, and should you use it?
Is It Grammatically Correct To Say “Very Much Appreciate It”?
“Very much appreciate it” is grammatically incorrect. Instead, you can say “I very much appreciate it” or “very much appreciated.” Both of those phrases are perfectly fine and grammatically correct to say that you’re thankful for something someone has done for you. However, combining the two and saying “very much appreciate it” is grammatically incorrect and should not be used at any time.
Are You Sure You Didn’t Hear “Very Much Appreciated”?
Okay, so where did this mishearing even come from? Well, it’s quite common for native speakers that are comfortable with their language to speak quickly. It’s just that simple. If a non-native speaker listens to a native talk, they’ll often lose track of where they are at in a sentence or might mishear a word or two and replace the letters as they go. It doesn’t help that “appreciated” and “appreciate it” are pronounced similarly.
If we look at the actual pronunciation rules for the words, we’ll see the following:
Appreciated: /a pri shi ya ted/
Appreciate it: /a pri shi ya tet/
You’ll notice that the “d” in “appreciated” and the “t” in “appreciate it” are pronounced by the mouth at the same time when they are said. The two sounds are incredibly similar, and when said quickly, it can be difficult even for a native speaker to understand which one was used without direct context to refer to.
So, with this in mind, it might have just been the case that you heard someone say “very much appreciated” and assumed they said, “very much appreciate it.” It happens to the best of us, so don’t feel disheartened! Just remember to listen more closely, and if you ever think you hear “very much appreciate it,” you’ve either heard it wrong, or the speaker doesn’t know about this article! We’ve all got to learn at some point.
Do People Use “Very Much Appreciate It” Even Though It Is Grammatically Incorrect?
You won’t often find any native speakers using “very much appreciate it” in any way because it’s grammatically incorrect and not something they’re taught. You’ll only ever find someone saying it if they include the pronoun “I” beforehand to let you know that they are the grateful ones. It’s strange because the phrase “I very much appreciate it” is fine, but remove the “I,” and the phrase all of a sudden makes no sense whatsoever.
There are a few situations (mostly informal ones) where no one will really call you out on it, even if you said it. It’s just a bad habit to get into. Think for a second what might happen if you do say “very much appreciate it,” bearing in mind all we’ve already said in this article. The likelihood is that no one is even going to hear the “t” and just assume you said the “d” in “appreciated” anyway. So, if you’re saying it aloud, it’s fine either way.
However, just because you’re saying it doesn’t mean you should allow yourself to slip into the bad habit of getting it wrong. Instead, you should focus your attention on pronouncing it correctly so that you get it right when it comes to writing it. If you write down “very much appreciate it” instead of “very much appreciated,” then that’s where people are going to start to notice that you don’t have a full grasp of the English language yet.
It Can Have Consequences If You Say “Very Much Appreciate It” In A Professional Setting
Alright, it’s all well, and good for us telling you all about how incorrect “very much appreciate it” actually is, but what does it matter? So what if you spell the phrase wrong? If you’re talking or writing to friends and family, the chances are that they’re never going to care or call you up on it. The real problem lies with being in a professional setting. A boss or manager might just be inclined to call you out on using the saying.
While “very much appreciated” is a nice way to say “thank you” for something to people that know you, it is strictly an informal saying. If you then go and use it in a professional setting, you’ll be called out for it. To make matters worse, if you misuse it in a professional setting (with “very much appreciate it”), your boss is pretty much going to laugh at you and may consider your position since you show such a lack of interest.
Although, that’s just the point. Even when you use “very much appreciated” and mean it in a formal setting, it often comes across as lazy and lackluster. If you use it to write a formal letter or email, the recipient will question your level of interest in the topic or the workplace. It just seems like a cheap way to be grateful for someone doing something, rather than actually putting in the time and effort to truly “appreciate” them.
This is why it matters what context you use it in. Most of your friends and family won’t care if you use “very much appreciated” and won’t see it as lazy. Even some bosses that you’re on more familiar terms with might not mind it either. You have to know your audience before using a phrase like this because some people really don’t respond well to it.
Our advice to you is to leave it out of a professional setting, just in case. Even if you think you’re on good terms with your boss and they won’t mind it, it’s not worth using it. You can instead come up with an alternative and better way of saying it. There are plenty out there, and we’re about to cover some for you in the next section so you can see what to use in place of “very much appreciate it.”
5 Better Ways To Say “Very Much Appreciate It”
Okay, so we’ve covered all we need to about the correct saying “very much appreciated” and the incorrect “very much appreciate it.” However, to say you the embarrassment of getting it wrong, or the trouble of thinking about the rules in the first place, we thought we’d give you some good alternatives that are better in certain scenarios. This way, you can avoid all the trouble and drama that might come with getting it wrong.
This is perhaps the most common way to show appreciation used in the world. Everyone knows what “thank you” means and what it stands for. You should use this in most situations, as it works both informally and formally. A simple thank you can go a long way rather than running the risk of being seen as lazy at work. You can also add “very much” to the end of it to give it a little extra power behind the thanks!
- Thank you for helping me.
- Thank you very much for the information.
Taking a leaf out of the book at “much appreciated,” we can use “many” at the start of “thanks” to show how grateful we are to someone. It’s actually a really popular way to sign off an email, even in a professional setting, so you know it works well in a formal setting. It’s not the most informal phrase, though, so you’ll be better off using this one at work and work alone.
- Many thanks for the information.
- Many thanks for the email.
This one takes the word “much” again, but we’re using a different word to show appreciation at the end. “Obliged” means much the same thing as “appreciated” and comes with much fewer problems. Many professional settings accept this as the “not-lazy” way to say thank you, even though you’re only replacing one word. It reads well and looks good for an informal setting.
- Your advice was much obliged.
Thanks A Lot
Following the trend of some of the other “thanks” phrases at the top, we’re adding another phrase at the end to show a great level of appreciation. “A lot” implies that we’re truly grateful for whatever the situation is. This is quite a good phrase to use both formally and informally, though it’s not quite as commonly used in a professional setting compared to “thank you very much.”
- Thanks a lot for all your help.
This one might come with the same problems as “appreciated” and “appreciate it,” but it’s worth including. Using “greatly” instead of “much” is another sure way to prove to your boss that you’re not just some lazy employee. Sure, you’ve only replaced one word, but it reads well in a professional setting and is well worth using!
- The meeting you held today was greatly appreciated.
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Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.